As if the life of a minor league baseball player wasn’t already filled with enough uncertainty, try being an organization’s top ranked prospect trapped in a seemingly never-ending cycle of trade rumors. Better yet, try being Keston Hiura, the number one up-and-comer of the Milwaukee Brewers who is simply taking things one day at a time as he continues to dominate at the double-a level with the Biloxi Shuckers.
For now and quite possibly for a very long time, Keston Hiura is a future centerpiece of the Milwaukee Brewers and that’s all he really knows. “Yeah, so I mean this is my first official job I’ve ever had, so I think it’s something that I’m still learning about. But nah, I’m just kidding.”
All jokes aside, at just 21 years of age, Hiura has been riding the minor league fast track ever since being taken with the ninth overall pick of the 2017 MLB first year player draft. “Yeah, so it’s been what, 13? Yeah, 13, 14 months since the draft in 2017. But yeah, it’s been a crazy year so far. Going from Irvine to here, it’s been quite the journey.”
But what if that journey got even crazier? What if Milwaukee had a change of plans? It’s hard to imagine the Brewers parting ways with a player as talented as Hiura, but his name did surface during the Manny Machado sweepstakes and even more so during talks about a potential deal for New York Mets ace Jacob DeGrom. “Whatever happens behind the scenes, I can’t control any of that. So just go out on the field and give my hardest, and it’s always good to be valued but that’s not something you can control.”
Hiura certainly isn’t alone in a dugout featuring 12 out of Milwaukee’s top 30 prospects according to MLBpipeline.com and one thing they can all control is their attitude. “As you can see, there’s a ton of talented players on this team. A lot of prospects, so it’s always good to keep the energy loose around the clubhouse. But a lot of the teams are wanting these players, so it’s always good to be a part of it.”
Last weekend, Hiura became just the third Brewers prospect to participate in the MLB Futures Game the year after being drafted, joining the elite company of Corey Ray in 2017 and Ryan Braun in 2006.
If Hiura’s road to the show ends up being anything like that of the latter, it’s only a matter of time for the five tool righty. “They try to push me a little quicker through the system a little bit quicker and all that. But other than that it’s just going out to wherever I am whether it was in Arizona or Wisconsin, Carolina or to here, just looking to give my best effort. Trying to learn new things along the way, and try to help the team win.”
Major League Baseball’s trade deadline is July 31st.